Geriatric Medicine in the United States and Great Britain, Carboni. Westport, CN: Greenwood Press, 159 pages.
This book investigates political, as well as other factors associated with the differential development of geriatric medicine toward specialty status in Great Britain and United States. The research approach was used with contrasting case studies. A historical analysis of the political organization and development of the two groups of physicians concerned with geriatric medicine was studied, the outcome of the efforts of the two occupational groups to achieve recognition for their occupational function are the foci of interest. The author proposes that although Great Britain and the United States share similar age and morbidity profiles, level of technology, and medical education systems, as a medical specialty, geriatrics has not been accepted in the U.S. as it has in Great Britain.
The author sites key factors that influence the ability of each occupational group to obtain the needed power resources to support its claim for specialty status such as academic legitimacy, profession-wide acceptance of the claim, and health care arrangements to fulfill its self-identified tasks.
The future of geriatric medicine in the United States and the limits of professional autonomy versus public responsibility are questions the author raises. The book will be of importance to those interested in geriatric medicine and gerontology but nurses may gain insight into their own professional dilemma from the similarities of these occupational groups claim to professional legitimacy.